Blessed Sacrament Cathedral can be saved – for $100 million

100 million

The new bishop of Christchurch will have to decide what to do about the earthquake Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament.

He will be faced with a choice of spending $45 million to restore the nave or $100 million to carry out a complete restoration.

A decision had previously been made  to save and restore just the nave, and slowly repair and restore other parts of the cathedral over time.

A total of $45m – $30m of diocese funds and $15m in fundraising – was budgeted for the nave project.

However over the last three months they have discovered that they could probably save the whole of the cathedral said the Diocesan administrator Fr Rick Loughnan.

Now, new engineering work on the land beneath the cathedral and the foundations indicate the whole building could be saved and restored at a cost of $100 million.

“So, now we are looking at a bigger number. We have engaged some fundraisers and they are confident that in various ways, overseas and here, we could possibly raise that money.” said Loughnan.

“We are really excited about that possibility. There are a whole lot of questions that have got to be asked to the new bishop when he comes and it is a decision he makes.”

“We will continue to explore this scenario to provide the Bishop with a recommendation,  including the need for fundraising $70m for the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament and $15m for work in the parishes.”

The late Bishop Barry had already engaged Fundraisers (AskRIGHT) who are optimistic of our ability to do this.

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